Updated: Jun 24
Today marks exactly 45 years since the Soweto Uprising. A day that we now know as Youth Day. On this day in 1976, thousands of students marched against the use of Afrikaans as the medium of instruction in black schools. Dozens of young people lost their lives in clashes with police while over 1000 were badly wounded.
The regurgitated message of June 16 has become a PR tool for many Companies in South Africa and all over the world, meanwhile the significance of the day is lost in the haze of PR opportunism for many young South Africans across all racial lines.
Since 1976 and 1994, we’ve had many years to maneuver the New South Africa, stumbling from one World Cup to the next. We have been trying to make sense of our complex coexistence and unity as a Nation all while having to deal with rising racial tensions hidden in the dark spaces of Facebook, Twitter, IG and surprisingly Tiktok.
In 2021 We have a responsibility as young people in the influencing, advertising and marketing space to become more conscientious in the content and messaging that we put out, we must quickly realise that the project of reconciliation now lies firmly in our hands. This year as we commemorate 16 June 1976, let us remember to take our role seriously and begin creating a truly united South Africa that is free from its historic bondage and healed from decades of pain.
We all bleed the same blood in spite of our race, cultures and social backgrounds. We are one People and one Human Race.
Happy Youth Day